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Hi again! It’s Sara, from The Aqua House.
Today I’m here to show you how to make your very own DIY Light Fixture…from a decorative drum. Its a fun way to add some creative and custom lighting to your home! You will have a light fixture that no one else has and the best part is that doing this DIY will save you so much money over buying similar designer lights!
You know those decorative drums that have been trending in home decor? The ones that make an awesome side table or perfect accent for a room? Well, I had an extra one sitting around my home and decided that it would make the perfect light fixture.
With just a few supplies from your local home improvement and thrift stores, you can transform a drum into a light fixture that is a great focal point and definitely something unique.
All it takes is a few hours and you can save yourself hundreds of dollars! My total investment (including the drum) was around $70 and I’ve priced similar fixtures for well over $400. I don’t know about you, but I love saving money and having something custom in my home…all at the same time!
For this project you will need:
- 2- 1/4 inch hollow threaded metal rod (3 inches long)
- candelabra part of an old light fixture
- 2- 1/2 inch washers
- 5/16 inch hollow rod
- spray paint
- jig saw
- drill with 5/16 inch bit
- super glue
- electrical tape
- twine or string
The first step is to select the decorative drum. There are many different types to choose from, but I suggest getting one that is light weight and the top is made from a material you can cut through (that means no ceramic ones!). My drum is metal on the sides and had a wood composite top.
The first step is to cut the top of the drum to make room for the pendant rod. On the top of the drum, mark out the center. You will need to drill a 5/16 inch hole for the the pendant rod to go through. It is up to you how you want to design the top of your light. You can leave the drum just how it is or cut part of it out. I chose to cut most of the top off so more light could shine through. Just make sure that you leave the hole in the middle for the pendant rod to go through. I left four 1 inch wide “legs” connecting to the center hole.The top of my drum was cut out with a jig saw.
The 5/16 inch metal rod will become the pendant part of your light fixture where the wiring will run through. Measure how far you want your light to hang and cut the rod to this length. My rod was cut to 19 inches. From a local thrift store, I bought an old candelabra light fixture that fit inside the drum. You will disassemble the light fixture being careful not to cut any of the wiring. My light fixture originally came with a chain to hang it, which was removed so the wiring could run through the pendant rod.
Now take one of the 1/4 inch hollow threaded rods (I found mine in the lighting section at Home Depot) and super glue the first inch of it into one end of the 5/16 hollow pendant rod. We will call this Side A. Repeat this step on the other side of the rod with the second 1/4 rod, but glue two inches of the rod inside the pendant rod. This is Side B. Then take the bushing that came with the original light fixture and thread it over Side A of the rod. Snug the bushing up to the 5/16 inch rod and glue into place.
Once the bushing is in place tape the 1/4 inch threaded rod on both ends so you can paint the rest of the rod without getting paint in the threads and making it difficult to screw together later on.
Take the candelabra and tape over the black spaces where the light bulbs will go.
I used a metallic paint to give it a brushed nickel look.
Hang the candelabra from a ladder or saw horse and get to work painting! Also paint the rod, washer, bushing nut, and ceiling plate.
After all the paint has dried, put the candelabra inside the drum to begin threading the wires through the hole and pendant rod. Slip one of the washers over the wires until it is snug against the top of the candelabra. Then pull the wires through the center hole on the top of the drum. Slip the second washer over the wires so it rests on top of the drum.
Once the wire is through the top of the drum and the washers are in place, use electrical tape to attach the end of the wires to some twine. This will help to thread the wires through the pendant rod.
Pull the twine through the rod starting with Side B until all the wires have been threaded through.
Bring the wires through the rod until the rod is snug against the top washer. The 1/4 inch threaded rod will fit through the top hole and screw into the top of the candelabra.
Tighten the rod up until the rod and candelabra are connected.
Attach the bushing nut to the bushing.
Slide the ceiling plate on over the wires and bushing until it rests on the bushing nut.
Now, go hang your light! I chose to put mine in my stairway and I love how it looks!
It’s definitely a one of a kind light fixture and I’ve had so many people ask me where I bought it! Its so fun to tell them that its a DIY!
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Giving your home that designer look without the designer budget is easier than you think!
Check out a few of these home decor projects that your wallet will thank you for: